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Interpersonal Shenanigans

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Amanda and Jenn discuss cookbooks, JFK, book group picks and more in this week’s episode of Get Booked.

This episode is sponsored by Post Grad by Caroline Kitchener and Kensington Books.

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The show can also be found on Stitcher here.



1. Good afternoon,

Love the podcast! Desperately need help with a non-fiction recommendation for a birthday gift.

A close friend of mine has a birthday next week and I would like to get her a book. She recently visited the JFK memorial in Dallas and was moved by the experience. She has fallen down the rabbit hole of hypothesizing what really happened or is known to have happened regarding his assassination.

Please HELP! This is totally not in my wheelhouse.

I think non-fiction would be best (as she doesn’t read much fiction), but will look into great fictional picks you suggest. I’m not really wanting to go the Stephen King route.

–Alicia Mac


2. Hi! I am in need of some book club recommendations. The members in my book club all have very different literary tastes and we lose so much time just trying to decide what to read next. One member likes light sentimental reads like “A Dog’s Purpose” and “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before.” A couple of the members prefer fantasy novels like the Harry Potter and the George R.R Martin books, and the last member doesn’t prefer any of the above but instead likes dark thrillers like Gillian Flynn’s books and historical fiction like “Miss Jane” by Brad Watson and “The Sisters Brothers.” We’ve loved Liane Moriarty’s books but totally struck out with Sorcerer to the Crown. Any idea of what might appeal to us or a title that will help us ease out of our comfort zones?
Thanks and love the show!


3. My husband and I are planning a quick weekend getaway to Vegas on April 28 for a little R & R and a chance to “just be” together, away from all the dramas of daily life. While we plan on spending majority of our time together at the pool with some fruity alcoholic drinks, I want some reading that is outside of my norm that will help me get away from it all. I’m looking for something fun, steamy, but nothing too unrealistic (or paranormal), because that tends to take me completely out of the moment. Working in a library my reading styles can sometimes go all over the place, but I tend to gravitate to high fantasy, YA like Sarah J Maas’ “A Court of Thorns and Roses,” or fiction like “Modern Lovers” by Emma Straub. Additional note, right now I don’t want anything filled with too much family drama (especially not as the central plot) because this is the type of stuff we are taking a vacation from. Emphasis on fun and steamy! Thank you!


4. Hello there! I love your podcast but it has made my TBR list grow to an unhealthy length. I run a YA book club at the library where I work. The club is geared for middle and high school students and I would like some suggestions for what to discuss next. I would love books that feature diverse characters and that appeal to both genders. Thanks for your help!


5. I’ve noticed that for the past year or so I’ve been reading novels almost exclusively from a male perspective (though mostly written by female authors funnily enough). Recently I picked up and reread my copy of The Bell Jar and realized just how much I miss reading from a female perspective. To give you a sense of the type of novels I like to read some of my favorites are The Secret History, Frankenstein, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, and pretty much everything by Nabokov. I trust both of you guys however so I leave the choices up to your discretion, no matter the type or genre. Thanks for the help!


6. Hi Amanda & Jenn,

I am a little embarrassed to ask this (hence the anonymous name), but I would love recommendations for good books on improving one’s sex life. My husband and I have been married for several years and have a very good relationship, but sex is one area we would like to work on. However, there are a ton of badly written sex books in the world, so I don’t know where to start.
Emily Nagoski’s “Come As You Are” is on my to-read list, thanks to the “All the Books” podcast. Do you have any other ideas for books of this type, that approach sex in a respectable, practical, genuinely helpful manner? (In other words, NOT looking for Cosmo-style articles in book form.)
Thanks for your suggestions on this personal topic.
— a shy lady listener!


7. Hi Amanda and Jenn,

I’m a huge fan of the show and would love your help with a new project. I recently agreed to start a book club with some new friends. I’m super excited to get it rolling, but also I have literally no idea what I’m doing. I haven’t been in a book club since middle school, and would love some recs to get us off to a strong start. The group got started through a meetup for lady nerds, so we’ve got many sci-fi, fantasy, and mystery fans. We love butt-kicking ladies, adventure, and diverse worlds/characters. We start meeting in the next couple of weeks, so if you could get me in soon I would greatly appreciate it.



8. I’m completely useless in the kitchen and I really need to fix the situation. When I was younger I decided as a feminist statement I was going to not learn to cook because I’d been told so many times that I needed to learn to cook for my “future husband”. Now I’m 21 and can only make spaghetti and eggs, and I’m tired of takeout. I’ve attempted to make a few things in the kitchen but discovered I didn’t even need to make my feminist statement because I’m very VERY bad in the kitchen. Do you know any books that have simple recipes for beginners? I don’t have any dietary restrictions, though I do get wigged out handling meat so a cookbook that has a selection of vegetarian options would be nice, but not necessary.
Thanks guys!


Books Discussed

The Death of a President, November 1963 by William Manchester

The Man Who Killed Kennedy: The Case Against LBJ (rec’d by Romeo Rosales)

Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng

Amberlough by Lara Elena Donnelly

When Beauty Tamed the Beast by Eloisa James

My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows

Not Your Sidekick by CB Lee

The Arrival by Shaun Tan

My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante

My Year of Meats by Ruth Ozeki

The Guide to Getting it On by Paul Joannides

Come As You Are by Emily Nagoski

A Murder in Time by Julie McElwain

In the Club newsletter

Empress of a Thousand Skies by Rhoda Belleza

Damn Delicious by Chungah Rhee

Mark Bittman (How To Cook Everything Vegetarian or How To Cook Everything: Basics)